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South Africa


South Africa is a large country, encompassing the most southern point of Africa as well as one of the most diverse landscapes on the entire continent. The country is also very culturally diverse, housing cosmopolitan cities such as Johannesburg as well as isolated and rural Zulu villages. Its geographic extremes include the arid semi-desert of the Karoo, the snow-capped peaks of the Drakensberg Range, the lush subtropical coast of KwaZulu-Natal and the fertile temperate valleys of Western Cape.

Within South Africa there are over 700 publicly owned preserves (including 19 national parks) and about 200 private reserves, with Kruger National Park and Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park being the largest. Amongst the rich and varied wildlife, South Africa‚Äôs fauna includes the world’s largest land mammal (the African elephant), as well as the second largest (white rhino) and the third largest (hippopotamus). It’s also home to the tallest (giraffe), the fastest (cheetah) and the smallest (pygmy shrew).

There are numerous primate sanctuaries throughout South Africa. The Handshake 09 visited the Vervet Monkey Foundation, Chimp Eden and C.A.R.E. producing digital media to help their various causes. For more information on the sanctuaries work, follow the links below.